Sale of foreign real estate
Semih Sancar Caddesi, Gold Tower 69, Kyrenia
Park Heights Square 1, Dubai, UAE
69, 67 1 Soi Kokyang, Rawai, Muang, Phuket 83130
Saint Petersburg, 21 Sotsialisticheskaya str., office 2043
Grand condo 7, Chroy Changvar, Phnom Penh, Cambodia
1 Sherifa Khimshiashvili Str., Batumi
Jl. Dukuh Indah No. 606, Bali 80361, Indonesia

Driving license in Thailand

Home page » Blog, news, reviews about Thailand » Driving license in Thailand
Author of the article:
Maksim
Thailand
Real Estate Specialist
Date:  25.02.2024
Reading time: 8 min.
Views:  166

If you are planning to visit Thailand, especially Phuket, and want to enjoy the freedom of movement by car or motorcycle, you need to know about driving licenses in this country. The importance of having a driver's license in Thailand cannot be underestimated, as it not only makes driving easier, but also provides legal protection.

Why do I need a driver's license in Thailand?

In Thailand, as in any other country, driving a vehicle without a driver's license is a violation of the law. At the same time, it is important to remember that an international driver's license is recognized in Thailand, but only in combination with your national license. However, having a local Thai driver's license ensures that you can produce a document that any Thai police officer can understand.

In addition, having a driver's license in Thailand can be useful when renting a car or motorcycle, as some companies may require it. In addition, in the event of a traffic accident, having a Thai license will facilitate the process of communicating with the insurance company.

Moreover, if you plan to live in Thailand for a long time or even move there permanently, having a local driver's license will be a necessity. In this case, they will become an integral part of your life, just like a passport or visa.

It is also worth noting that the process of obtaining a driver's license in Thailand is quite simple and inexpensive. Thus, this investment will not only provide you with legal protection, but also avoid many problems in the future.

Categories of rights in Thailand

In Thailand, there are several categories of driving licenses that vary depending on the type of vehicle you plan to drive. Here is a short overview of the main categories:

CategoryVehicle typeNotes
«A»MotorcyclesFor motorcycles with an engine displacement of more than 110 cc, you must have a category "A" license.
«B»CarsIncludes passenger cars and small trucks.
«A1»MotorcyclesFor motorcycles with engine displacement up to 110 cc.
«D»The busesFor driving buses with more than 10 seats.

Please note that each category of driver's license is issued separately, and you will have to take two different exams to get a license to drive a car and motorcycle. However, it is in your best interest to get a driving license for the vehicle that you plan to use most often in Thailand.

Preparing for obtaining rights

Before applying for a driver's license in Thailand, you will need to collect some documents. First, you must have a valid passport with a visa. Secondly, you will need a medical certificate confirming that you are physically and mentally healthy to drive the vehicle. This certificate can be obtained in most hospitals and clinics in Thailand.

You will also need a Residence Certificate, which can be obtained at your local immigration office or at your consulate. This document confirms your place of residence in Thailand.

It is important to note that to obtain a Residence Certificate, you will most likely need to provide proof of your place of residence in Thailand, such as a rental agreement or electricity bill. In addition, some immigration offices may require you to submit two 4x6 cm photos and fill out a questionnaire.

It may take some time to prepare all the necessary documents, so we recommend that you start the process in advance. Don't forget that a medical certificate is usually valid for 30 days.

It is also worth noting that to get a driver's license in Thailand, you will have to pass theoretical and practical exams. Preparing for these exams may require extra time, so don't forget to pay enough attention to it.

Step-by-step instructions for getting your rights

Getting a driver's license in Thailand is a process that requires some time and patience. Here's a step-by-step action plan:

StagesDescriptionTime
Visit to the hospital to get a medical certificateThis process usually takes several hours and involves a basic physical examination. The certificate is issued immediately after the inspection.2-3 hours
Registration of a Residence CertificateYou can do this at your local immigration office or at your consulate. Please provide proof of your place of residence in Thailand, such as the rental agreement.1-2 days
Submission of documents to the transport DepartmentOnce you have collected all the necessary documents, you can submit them to the local transport authority. There you will be given a textbook with the traffic rules of Thailand in English and set a date for the theoretical exam.1 day

In addition to these three main stages, you will also need to prepare and pass the theoretical and practical exams. Preparation for the theoretical exam may take several days, depending on your knowledge of traffic rules and the level of English. The practical exam is usually scheduled for a day or two after passing the theoretical one.

Theoretical exam

The theoretical exam includes 50 questions in English, most of which are based on the traffic rules of Thailand. To pass the exam successfully, you must answer at least 45 questions correctly.

You should take the time to study the traffic rules, as some of the rules may differ significantly from what you are used to. For example, in Thailand, traffic is left-handed.

It is important to note that the exam questions may concern not only the rules of the road, but also the basics of first aid in road accidents. There may also be questions related to the technical aspects of car operation.

Preparation for the theoretical exam may take some time, so you should not leave it until the last moment. Use the available resources, including the Thai Traffic Laws textbook that is issued when applying for a license, as well as various online resources and applications.

Finally, remember that the main goal of the theory exam is to make sure that you have the necessary knowledge to safely participate in traffic. Therefore, it is important not only to remember the rules, but also to understand them.

Practical exam

After successfully passing the theoretical exam, you will be able to start the practical one. This exam includes driving a car or motorcycle (depending on the selected category) on a special platform. Basic driving skills and knowledge of traffic rules are tested.

During the practice exam, you may need to demonstrate your ability to park, perform various maneuvers, and use turn signals and headlights correctly. In addition, the examiners pay attention to your confidence behind the wheel, your ability to respond adequately to traffic situations and compliance with traffic rules.

If you didn't manage to pass the practical exam the first time, don't worry. In Thailand, it is allowed to retake the exam, and you can use this opportunity to improve your driving skills and prepare for a second attempt.

After successfully passing the practical exam, you will be issued a driver's license. The rights are issued for one year, after which they can be extended for a long time.

Life hacks for getting rights

  1. Prepare in advance: Before you arrive in Thailand, please make sure that you have an international driving license. This will simplify the process of renting a car and give you the opportunity to practice driving on the left side of the road.
  2. Study the traffic rules: Traffic rules in Thailand may differ significantly from what you are used to. So take the time to learn and understand them.
  3. Be patient: The process of obtaining a driver's license in Thailand can take some time, especially during the holiday season, when transport departments are very busy.
  4. Tune in to success: It is important to approach the process of obtaining rights with a positive attitude. Don't be afraid to make a mistake during the exam, it's important to learn from your mistakes and not give up.

Renewal and replacement of rights

A driver's license in Thailand is issued for a period of 1 year, after which it can be extended for 5 years. To renew, you will need to submit the same documents as when you first applied, as well as pass a medical examination. The renewal process usually takes several hours and can be completed at any branch of the transport authority.

If you already have a driver's license from another country, you can replace it with a Thai one. To do this, you will need to provide your national driver's license, medical certificate and residence certificate. After that, you will have to pass a theoretical exam. A practical exam is usually not required.

It is important to note that replacing foreign rights with Thai ones does not cancel your foreign rights. This way, you can use both sets of rights in accordance with their terms and conditions.

In conclusion, getting a driver's license in Thailand is a process that requires some time and patience, but the result is a document that will ensure your freedom of movement and protection in this delightful country.

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, you can drive a car in Thailand with an international driver's license, but it must be presented together with your national driver's license.

In Thailand, there are various categories of driving licenses, including category " A " for motorcycles with an engine capacity of more than 110 cc. cm, category " B "for cars and small trucks, category" A1 " for motorcycles up to 110 cc. see, and category "D" for buses.

To obtain a driver's license, you will need a valid passport with a visa, a medical certificate of physical and mental health, and a residence certificate confirming your place of residence in Thailand.

The process includes obtaining a medical certificate, obtaining a residence certificate, submitting documents to the transport department, preparing and passing theoretical and practical exams.

The time required to obtain a driver's license may vary, but it includes visiting the hospital, completing the necessary documents, and preparing for exams. We recommend that you start the process in advance.

Yes, after the first year of use, your driver's license can be renewed for 5 years. It is also possible to replace foreign rights with Thai ones after passing the theoretical exam without having to pass the practical exam.

Can I drive a car in Thailand with an international driver's license?

Yes, you can drive a car in Thailand with an international driver's license, but it must be presented together with your national driver's license.

What categories of driving licenses exist in Thailand?

In Thailand, there are various categories of driving licenses, including category " A " for motorcycles with an engine capacity of more than 110 cc. cm, category " B "for cars and small trucks, category" A1 " for motorcycles up to 110 cc. see, and category "D" for buses.

What documents are required to obtain a driver's license in Thailand?

To obtain a driver's license, you will need a valid passport with a visa, a medical certificate of physical and mental health, and a residence certificate confirming your place of residence in Thailand.

What is the process of obtaining a driver's license in Thailand?

The process includes obtaining a medical certificate, obtaining a residence certificate, submitting documents to the transport department, preparing and passing theoretical and practical exams.

How long does it take to get a driver's license in Thailand?

The time required to obtain a driver's license may vary, but it includes visiting the hospital, completing the necessary documents, and preparing for exams. We recommend that you start the process in advance.

Can I renew my driver's license in Thailand or replace my foreign license with a Thai one?

Yes, after the first year of use, your driver's license can be renewed for 5 years. It is also possible to replace foreign rights with Thai ones after passing the theoretical exam without having to pass the practical exam.

    Find the best properties - just fill out the form

    By clicking the "Submit" button, you agree to the site's privacy policy

    Contacts

    Do not miss the start of sales of residential complexes at the best price
    Subscribe to a group on WhatsApp

    Leave a request

    Please fill in the phone number in international format

    Didn't find what you were looking for?

    Answer 4 questions (it will take 30 seconds) - get an individual selection of relevant real estate objects + Guide " How to choose a property abroad”

    Interesting? Click " Start selection”

    Start selection process

    Or just email us at WhatsApp - our specialists will answer all your questions

    en_USEnglish